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Reflection on United States ‘racial divide’ is personal for Illinois bishop

Slave hands

IN a 19-page reflection on the “racial divide” in the United States, Bishop Edward Braxton of Belleville, Illinois, who is African-American, said he twice had been the victim of what he considered to be unjust police attitudes. The episodes “made me very conscious of the fact that simply by being me, I could be the cause of suspicion and concern ... Read More »

Plea for peace

Refugee

This is a guest post by Chris Ng, a Brisbane Catholic and humanitarian. I WAS recently in Erbil, Kurdistan, helping out as a volunteer in one of the 26 refugees camps cared for by the Catholic Church. I was assigned by Archbishop Basha Warda, a kind and softly spoken man. I do what I can to help, and I fell into the ... Read More »

Studying Pope Francis and Catholic orthodoxy

By Fr Andrew Chase I READ a story the other day entitled “Is Pope Francis steering the Church towards Schism?” A quick Internet search revealed dozens more opinion pieces in the same vein, suggesting that Pope Francis has too little concern for faithfulness to Catholic doctrine. And I found myself wondering: is it just me or is there a little ... Read More »

Did Pope Francis get what he wanted?

SINCE the end of the October 5-19 Synod of Bishops on the family, news outlets have portrayed the outcome as a “setback” or “loss” for Pope Francis – even a “rebuke” to him. Journalists have pointed to the absence, in the synod’s final report, of an earlier version’s conciliatory language toward people with ways of life contrary to Catholic teaching, ... Read More »

Syria’s war is part of humanitarian crisis

Syria

A CHURCH official who just returned from a visit to Syria said “the humanitarian situation is worse than I thought”. Secretary of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum Monsignor Giampietro Dal Toso told journalists in Beirut on November 1 that he had seen “the concrete face of suffering” as a result of war. He also said the humanitarian crisis in Iraq ... Read More »

Sex, marriage and freedom of religion

By Martin Hanson MARRIAGE is defined in Australia’s Marriage Act 1961 as “the union of a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life”. Like a romance novel, the legal definition implies but does not refer explicitly to sexual relationship. This is understood in the context of “union”. The relationship in marriage has ... Read More »

Leading a parish

By Dr Anthony Gooley A PARISH is a portion of the local church (diocese) and a local church is first and foremost a Eucharistic assembly gathered around its bishop. In every diocese there is only one bishop who is the head of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church that gathers there. Auxiliary bishops, if there are any, are bishops ... Read More »

Putting your faith into action

Homeless man sleeping

By Brian Moore RECENT research that was published in national newspapers found that one in seven  Australians were living in poverty. Nearly 18 per cent of children live beneath the poverty line, one-third of them in sole-parent families. On September 27 each year the St Vincent de Paul Society in Australia and in countries across the world celebrated the Feast ... Read More »

Belief in Purgatory in the early Church

Person lighting candle

I was talking recently with a Protestant friend about praying for a mutual acquaintance who had passed away and she denied there was any need for it since there is no Purgatory. Is there any evidence in the early Church of prayer for the faithful departed? I answered a similar question many years ago, which appears as question 25 in ... Read More »

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